It’s hard to know what to do in the face of homophobic remarks, gender-based harassment, or anti-gay bullying—all of which are very common in schools around the country today. In this excerpt from “Straightlaced—How Gender’s Got Us All Tied Up “, three students share their stories about finding the courage to stand up to friends, classmates, and even themselves to become allies on LGBTQ issues.
“Straightlaced” was produced by “GroundSpark” as part of the Respect For All Project.
From girls confronting media messages about culture and body image to boys who are sexually active just to prove they aren’t gay, “Straightlaced” offers raw, emotional first-person accounts from a fascinating array of students about the toll that deeply held stereotypes and rigid gender policing have on all our lives.
With courage and unexpected humor, they open up their lives to the camera: choosing between “male” and “female” deodorant; deciding whether to go along with anti-gay taunts in the locker room; having the courage to take ballet; the double standard about being sexually active; avoiding the restroom so they won’t get beaten up; or mourning the suicide of a classmate. It quickly becomes clear that just about everything teens do is deeply impacted by our culture’s ideas about gender and sexuality.
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